So it turns out that I was advised that this would be crazier than the Brutopia open mic, that happens on the same night in Montreal. The difference being that Brutopia was within the central downtown area, within walking distance of my hotel, and this Bar de Courcelle was on a long metro ride right across on the other extreme end, the west end, of the city.
But did I go to Montreal to spend time only at open mics that I know like the back of my hand? No. And this place sounded interesting. It’s a neat, long, sizeable bar in a fairly residential area, with a large stage at the far end, and what sounded like a pretty decent sound system, until you actually got up on stage and found more sound coming from the chatter of the clients than the sound monitor.
But what did I find? Something pretty close to a “scene” at this open mic, that has been going around two or three years. Some really great and original musicians, ranging from a Johnny Cash sound-alike, to the MC of the show who has a fabulous voice and original material.
But again, the audience it turns out, is there with only half an ear to the music, and the rest of the reason is for socializing. I had a fabulous time socializing myself. And once behind the mic, I must say it was actually the most disagreeable experience of the whole week in Montreal. Had it not been for two or three people afterwards telling me they liked my set, I’d have had no idea that anyone in the place had listened!
But this is definitely, no question about it, a place to go if you want to check out the open mic scene in Montreal. Despite my depression behind the mic, I’ll return again myself, if I get a chance.